February 23, 2009
Hidden Jem from 1976 - From the Kingdom of Jamalot
I jotted down the following reflections on listening to this music (1976-10-03 Cobo Arena, Detroit, MI) while listening to one of the other aud postings (http://www.archive.org/details/gd76-10-03.aud.weiner.19415.sbeok.shnf) which was very hard because of the distortions and levels. I am grateful for them but, this version is just spectacular!
While I was listening, I was reading the Grateful Dead Listening Guide (http://deadlistening.blogspot.com/2008/02/grateful-dead-sunday-october-3-1976.html) which identified this show to begin with (the start of my journey).
The original intent of my writing was to document my thoughts in reply to what I was reading, while I was listening. See what ensues.
Agreed that hall effect was not a liability, rather it was a bit of an asset. Especially during Playing, I think Jerry was playing raindrop notes hitting the ground in puddles and pavement which resonated droplets of spiral volcano shaped water wheels which look like wax frozen in space, like some slow motion movie of ripples from a crown shaped water drop. I was deep into jam wondering how I got here and if someone was going to lead me out, as I wandered among the tall blades of grass which shook in rhymical frequency to the music. The jam stretched in different directions (that’s terrestrial “left, right, forward, back” or even celestial “up, down”) but it also stretched in dimensions (that’s between worlds and between time). Again, time can be terrestrial from past to present or present to future (linear if you will) but time can also be multi-dimensional (that’s a stretch between awareness and where you are right now… reading this vs. where I was while writing this).
Drums had some serious get up and dance factor to it. My leg got shaken so hard, it threw me up off my chair and got me dancing to the beat. And what a beautiful transition into the song which captures my thoughts in a song… Wheel! Round and round it turns, revolving, swaying, coming full circle with speeds that make you feel like you should hold on for dear life, with the feeling that the rotational speeds will throw you from it like a kid on a playground on that spinning bars thing, and yet it simultaneously feels like the scene is in slow motion, almost seeming to freeze. Mmm… good scotch. Wow, the jam inside the wheel is not the jam of a pb&j sandwich but that of a tornado of sound with notes spinning around inside the revolving wind of the conical tunnel. Jerry and Keith are just playing some crazy repetitious themes which neither realizes is connected until they twist together like a double helix strand of DNA being pulled apart from the center and then, after twisting in space, reunites with it’s counter part to reform the whole chord.
Honestly I’m not all that sure what is going on right now in my own world.
That Comes a Time comes out of the ether! It was like not there and yet there at the same time. Hovering, suspended, waiting to be played. How many times did they sing “only love can fill”?
This show is spectacular. I’m not even sure what’s going on with this Dancing in the Streets (if it is that). Just as a recap, I’ll cut and paste the set list from Archive.org and go read the Listening Guide while I listen to something that sounds like NFA.
Playin' in the Band> Drums> The Wheel> Good Lovin'> Jam> Comes a Time> Dancin in the Street> Not Fade Away (with China Cat tease)> Dancin in the Street E: Around & Around
Man this show is just rife with jam. I am astounded that even in NFA, Jerry just keeps on jamming away. I think he feels like he’s the only one in the room. Which if you think about it (but not for too long) is what they do to mental patients, put them in a room by themselves. Which is a difficult thought but, I digress. That China Cat tease just makes you grin like the One Eyed Cheshire himself. I think they should have went there but that’s ok. Keith wandered away and back again. The NFA jam just drifts in and out. Magnificent! I think everybody zoned out till they didn’t even know what they were playing. Someone show us back to the path or, better yet, let’s make our own path. Let’s explore something new, a place we’ve never been. That’s the feeling of this jam, it’s like a place I’ve never been to before but am experiencing for the first time and yet, I somehow try to think I’ve been there before but can only use words to describe it which have their meaning firmly rooted in the memory originally associated with learning it. Therefore, déjà vu is just using previous memories to interpret that which appears to be brand new. Like when we form words which we have never heard before or have never seen them written, or ever been asked to write the words down, we would use letters from our own alpahabet (the pieces with which we construct words) and so new experiences are constructed with the pieces of memory mixed with company and environmental conditions.